Planning consent for a new rail depot at Exeter has been submitted by Network Rail on behalf of GWR [today]. This submission forms part of a wider programme of rail improvements to increase rail capacity in the South West, including new and refreshed trains and station improvements.
The train operator GWR is looking to improve the existing Exeter Olds View Depot train maintenance facility in Exeter to accommodate an increase in fleet size in the Devon and Cornwall area which will lead to more seats, and more frequent services.
GWR Regional Development Manager West, Dan Okey explains:
“With brand new electric trains coming to suburban London services and bi-mode Intercity Express Trains on the mainline in Devon and Cornwall, this will allow us to move part of our existing regional fleet to Exeter – providing more carriages, and more frequent services to the area.”
The new depot is situated alongside existing facilities next to Exeter St.Davids station and will provide enhanced modern servicing, cleaning and maintenance facilities necessary to support these trains. The plans include office and welfare facilities for staff and the depot is designed to provide improved facilities for train maintenance.
GWR is seeking to begin the new depot, subject to planning consent being secured, in Spring 2018 and will complete in mid 2019.
New electric trains in London and Thames Valley area, and new Intercity Express Trains across the GWR mainline network will enable GWR to provide significant improvements in capacity on mainline, regional and local suburban services.
These changes are part of the wider franchise improvements that GWR is delivering and is one of the largest fleet upgrades that the Great Western network will see in a generation.